en·dur·ancethe fact or power of enduring an unpleasant or difficult process or situation without giving way.

One would think this would be a great word for 2020 as we have all had to endure more than a few difficult situations in just the few short months of this decade…true…but that’s not what I’m rambling about today!


Sometimes I get “a little moody” as my mom would say, and I start to doubt or second guess as I  ponder on what have I truly accomplished – not in my whole life, but perhaps just the recent past – days, weeks, months (said in an Eeyore voice) – especially now when the days all seem to be running together…so, you guessed it – this morning I decided to prove to myself that I’ve been productive and not just eating Oreos every day (when in fact we went through more than our fair share early on in with the stay-at-home issues).

Okay – so what am I leading up to and how in the world is it quilt related? Glad you asked!

The Proof is in the Photos

I love my cell phone – especially the camera part! I take photos every day, some of Oscar the cat to text to our youngest son while he’s at work proving “while the master’s away the cat does play.”  Mainly my photos consist of quilts. (Duh, huh!) All stages. From the piecing process, to the visible growth on the design wall, to the quilt being quilted on the longarm — start to finish (well, not all of them get finished, but when they do, they are documented!). Naturally sprinkled in among cat and quilt photos are the pictures of our granddaughter – sometimes captured off social media and sometimes in person (I like those the best).

Our kids post the sweetest photos of Reagan – this girl is always up to something!

This morning as I was pondering what in the world have I been doing with myself, goodness it’s almost the end of May! I took a look through my camera file of photos for the year and noticed this one…my documentation of changing the rotary blade.

Now you might not think that truly significant enough to document but let me explain…I love my rotary cutter. In fact, I love several of my rotary cutters! As I have them in all colors, including the new navy-colored one that is still in the package buried somewhere in the organized clutter of my studio…It’s my thought is that you can never have too many rotary cutters. For example, I use the daisy one to trim batting and backing when a quilt comes off the longarm. “Mr. Yellow” I reserve for cutting things like Soft ‘N Stable or trimming vinyl. By far my favorite go-to cuter is “Splash” – the turquoise one, of which the remainder of this tall tale is about. 

A true collector at heart!

True Endurance

Several years ago Olfa came out with their “Endurance Blade” which promoted a longer lasting blade for my favorite cutters…naturally I had to try one. I decided then and there that I would use a designated cutter (Splash) to cut out all my quilts to see how long the blade actually lasted. Self-proclaimed quality tester that I am!

In this older photo you can see where I put the date on the blade when it went into use. Alas, so many rotations of designated use wore the sharpie marks off and I never really got to document how long between blade changes.

Fast forward to today again, when I was mulling over my 2020 photos…I discovered that just since January I have worked on these projects…. Placemats using my Simply Celebrate pattern, I began a mystery quilt  with Sew On The Go (key word, began – its a work in progress), made a cell phone holder (Call It, Patterns by Annie), cut out binding for a “quilt in waiting” that finally got quilted and gifted to Reagan, cut out and made a Hunter’s Star table runner as a class sample, and numerous step outs for workshops.

But Wait! There’s More!

And that’s just the projects I can show you! 

I have cut yardage for four of my designer friends for their quilt projects using my upcoming Signature Collection by Island Batik, not to mention the three quilts of my own for this project – yardage and naturally cut all the parts and pieces to construct these quilts!

Since then I have been working steadily behind the scenes on different design concepts for future quilts – many trial blocks have been cut and sewn before determining that my ideas will work…to date I have made two new secret sewing projects before I changed the Endurance blade this week to continue working on the third one. And the good news is these three new designs are in the process of having the patterns written, tested and published! Hopefully very very soon!

Yep, I think you should give the Endurance Blade a whirl! Its Rambler approved (grin) and you can find it in my Etsy Store – if we run out, just wait, there’s more on the way!

Endurance to the Fullest

Those of you who read all the way to the end of my long rambles are the bestest! As I love to say, “A Rambler needs and audience” and I appreciate you sew much. I’m going to try to do better about keeping up with the blog and such, but good golly Miss Molly – things are busy over here – design ideas popping in my head during my sleep, hours spent using my rotary cutter (grin) during the day, a little distraction about setting up an Etsy shop with my daughter-in-law Katie, and of course enjoying our sweet Reagan….

All this to say – Endurance is really faith in action. Faith to keep on keeping on, to remember to enjoy life to its fullest, to rise above situations and in the case of rotary cutters – keep rollin’ on down the cutting mat!

This is Karen Overton, The Quilt Rambler reminding you to #StayCalmAndQuiltOn  

Reagan reminds us all to enjoy the simple things in life
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2 thoughts on “Endurance

  1. Brenda @ Songbird Designs says:

    Well Ms. Karen, I was waiting to see exactly how long that Endurance blade lasted. I couldn’t see the date in the pic but it looked like 6 of 17!! I just purchased some of these blades and plan on giving them a try in my purple Splash! I’ve been a Martelli girl for a long time but lately, when you change the blade in them something isn’t quite right. I loved seeing Reagan in her little plastic “car!!” as well as her watching the goats and them watching her! Love it!

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